Chinese Parents Are Now Allowed to Have Two Children

The Chinese government announced it was doing away with its decades-old one-child policy, paving the way for families to have two children if they wish.

Millions of parents in China no longer have to settle for being one and done. On Thursday, the Chinese government announced it was doing away with its decades-old one-child policy and allowing moms and dads to have two children. But don't attribute the move to baby fever—the Communist government is all about the bottom line. In this case, leaders believe more kids equals a larger future workforce, which will put less pressure on an aging population, the New York Times reports. "This will benefit sustained and healthy economic development," the National Health and Family Planning Commission said in a statement.

This isn't the first time the government eased up on its attempt at population control: Back in 2013, it said married couples could try for a second baby if one of the spouses was an only child.

The big question, of course, is if enough Chinese parents will want more children. As it stands, raising a baby there sounds an awful lot like raising a baby here: expensive. And judging by the dismally low number of couples who applied to have a second child in 2013, those skyrocketing costs may be one reason many are sticking with a smaller family.

Thankfully, parents have some time to mull things over. As the Times reports, the new policy will need to go through the central government first (where some tweaks are likely) then on to provincial governments (where even more tweaks are possible). In all, the process could take "many months." Which—let's be honest—is just enough time for grandparents to start pressuring their own children to go for baby number two.

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Bonnie Gibbs Vengrow is a New York City-based writer and editor who traded in her Blackberry and Metro card for playdates and PB&J sandwiches—and the once-in-a-lifetime chance to watch her feisty, funny son grow up.Follow her on Twitter, Pinterest, and Google+.


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